Sunday, December 06, 2009

Reviving the Streetcar Discussion With A Couple of Back-Burner Items

Neck-snapping WCF segue: One gentle reader report that Jon Greiner was a rattled guest this morning on Faux News

Just to keep the conversation going during the ongoing annual December (pre-Christmas) re-meat news lull, we thought we'd take the opportunity to direct our readers to a couple of back-burner news items, related to a topic which has generated considerable previous discussion here on Weber County Forum... Yesiree... let's have Streetcars as the main topic of the day.

In that connection we'll first refer to this December 5 Salt Lake Tribune story, which reports that Salt Lake City officials are taking the lead in planning a streetcar system which would serve key waypoints in Salt Lake's central downtown area:

Salt Lake City wants to make the dusty black-and-white picture books of downtown bound to life.
Mayor Ralph Becker imagines a 21st-century version of the city's old streetcars snaking through the capital's urban catacomb.
And, now, consultants hired by the city have four potential routes that -- depending on federal funding -- one day may make it possible to traverse the business district on wheels without a car.
"The administration sees it as a key element in catalyzing development in downtown," says Becker spokeswoman Lisa Harrison Smith. "It's definitely a high-level priority."
Subject to tweaks, the proposed alignments would zip streetcars from the Salt Lake Central transit station south to 900 South, east to 500 East and right through downtown's heart -- passing by the Salt Palace Convention Center and planned City Creek Center. The lines would be designed to swell ridership on the Utah Transit Authority bus and rail network and serve as a "circulator," ferrying people between downtown TRAX stations and the FrontRunner hub.
What's significant here, we believe, is that it's Salt Lake Officials, Mayor Ralph Becker in particular, who are driving the selection of Salt Lake's preferred transportation corridors. Unlike the situation in Ogden City, where UTA bureaucrats are attempting to interpose their own priorities, without deference to the desires of the citizens and officials "on the ground," UTA is evidently taking a hands-off attitude with Salt Lake planning, and allowing "the locals" to plan their own Transit Oriented Development modes.

It might be helpful if Ogden's own Mayor would get aboard the 25th/26th Street transit corridor bandwagon, don't you think? It's been reported that he's indeed leaning that way; and we hereby invite Boss Godfrey to jump aboard with both feet. What a delightful novelty it would be to witness Ogden's Mayor working WITH the lumpencitizens for once.

And for those of us who might believe that Ogden is alone in being singled out by UTA as a city where local priorities seem to be take a back seat to UTA's own bone-headed plans, we provide a link to this 11/27/09 Standard-Examiner story, which reports that the city of Clearfield also finds itself in a similar boat.

Next, we'll shine the spotlight on this 11/25/09 Utah Heritage Foundation blog article, wherein Utah's premier historic preservation/neighborhood development organization goes unequivocally record in support of Ogden's 25th/26th Street east-west transportation corridor.

We'll invite our readers to address the above-suggested topics, or treat this article as an open-topics thread. But before we turn over the floor, we'll offer another (patented) neck snapping WCF segue:

We received a report this morning that Ogden's own Jon Greiner was a guest this morning on Fox News (the national cable version,) being interviewed on the topic of public employee double dipping. Our reader tipster reports that our Senator/Chief of Police appeared to be a mite uneasy about the line of questioning. If anyone else would like to chime with more information on this, we're sure our Sunday afternoon Weber County Forum readership would be most grateful. We've been unable to verify this tip ourselves; perhaps our ever-alert readership can provide some help

That's it for now folks.

Who will be the first to comment?

10 comments:

Flunked English said...

Senator Greiner also gets mentioned in USA Today:

States act to curb 'double dipping'

Curmudgeon said...

Looks like Ogden Police Chief [when is other job doesn't interfere], FOM, and State Senator John Greiner [R-Ogden] is becoming the national poster boy for greedy double-dippers via "retirement in place" policies.

Good.

Why, I'll bet he and Rep. Dee --- currently battling bravely to defeat the Ethics Referendum in order to protect Cub Scouts constitutional right to give him tee-shirts --- have ducky discussions about ethical conduct whenever they meet.

AWM said...

Came across an FAA licensed aircraft on Google with Greiners house address for an LLC. Plane valued in excess of $350K

js

Ray said...

H'mmm, to bad USA today and Fox News missed Chief/Senator Greiner's Hatch Act violations.

disgusted said...

i know that its off the topic but on the city council agenda for their next meeting is another proposal to allow for accessory dwelling units in another part of town. for those not familiar with what an “adu” it another word for rental property. in this case as the city represents it its where the homeowner rent out part of their house to non-related tenants. in theory its doesn’t sounds to bad except that it has an effect of changing the make up of the neighborhood by introducing a transient element to the area and increases the amount of traffic in the area. it also encourages more of the area to transition to rental property as those who moved into the area to establish themselves in a single family neighborhood start to feel that they have moved into a rental complex because of all of the transient people. stability is lost. the city assures the residents that it will enforce the restrictions that the owner must live in part of the resident (the requirement of an adu) but the city has a terrible record on enforcement when it comes to just about anything related to code enforcement unless they can generate a fine that the city can collect and in a lot of cases what the neighbors end up with is a house being cut up into two or three rental units with no owner on the premises. if the city ever does react the whole neighborhood identity will be lost by the time they do react. this is exactly what happened to the inner city of ogden between washington and harrison. the city council needs to wake up and stop this. otherwise the decline that were dealing with in inner city ogden will not be contained to just that part of the city. as a city we are now trying to undo just this kind of poor planning that took place years ago in the inner city. city council how do you think it started.

this time the city planning department is recommending to the city council that they amend the community plan for the area south of the old mckay-dee hospital and west of harrison blvd to allow for adu dwellings. this part of the city has been an affordable and pretty solid single family housing area within the city for some time now.

the city does not need more rental units in this city it needs more single family neighborhoods. we need is support our single family neighborhood identities and to enforce the code restrictions that we have on the books to protect these neighborhoods. if there are individual homeowners violating these codes in this area then they need to be served notice rather than being used as an excuse to make the practice acceptable. in the big picture this is far better for the city and the rest of the residents.

city council please act responsible and say no.

Curmudgeon said...

Disgusted:

Hope residents of the neighborhood attend and speak. Is there a neighborhood association there? If so, they ought to have a rep. present.

Jennifer Neil said...

disgusted -- I live in an area next to a fairly new subdivision where people buy their homes ... and it is also very transient as far as people moving in and out a lot. "Times they are a'changin" -- B Dylan -- I wonder if renting out a room or two means the difference between keeping or losing their home in these times ...

Colonel Jessup said...

Greiner the whiner, the big fat pig. he should just disappear or the republicans are going to loose this next falls election.

Curmudgeon said...

CJ:

No, they're not.

Dan S. said...

disgusted:

I very much doubt that allowing accessory dwelling units (ADUs) would worsen the neighborhood. I wish that some of the rental houses near me were instead owner-occupied with ADUs. Then the owners would be there to maintain the property and keep an eye on the tenants. Instead we have rental houses with absentee landlords (some quite responsible, some not).

That said, I wonder why this proposal is coming up at this particular time, for this particular neighborhood. Anyone know?

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